Four Arm Kniffin System for Growing Grapes
David Handley: I'm David Handley, vegetableand small fruit specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Today we'regoing to be talking about a simple system for pruning hardy grapes here in Maine. The pruning system I like to use is very simple.It keeps the plant open, so it gets light in the summer time, but it also protects theplant a little bit in the winter. This system works best with concord type or labrusca typegrapes, which are the grapes that tend to grow best in Maine. There's really a couple of systems that willwork well for labrusca type grapes. The first
one I want to talk about is the four arm kniffin,and that's what we're going to prune first. The four arm kniffin consists of a perennialtrunk, which goes from the ground right up to a top wire, which is set at about fivefeet. Coming off of this trunk, we will have four arms, or canes, oneyear old growth.Two on the top wire, running each side of the top wire, and two on a lower wire. Thislower wire should be set at about two and a half feet off the ground. Every year, we're going to come in and pruneit so we continue to have a perennial trunk, but only four one yearold trunks to producethe fruit.
Here is our permanent trunk. You can see here,this is a cane from last year. Two yearold cane, this was our fruiting cane last summer,and you can see the difference. Here's this year's cane, that nice chocolate brown colorand smooth bark, and here we go with the older cane, the two yearold cane. The bark is startingto peel, and has more of a gray look to it, so we know that this particular shoot isn'tgoing to fruit again. It's the one yearold shoots that come off it that will fruit. This is going to get pruned out, so that wecan keep our fruiting wood closer to the trunk. We'll just take that back to a good fruitingshoot, and we'll start to cut it out. This
is where it gets fun. We need to wrestle thisout of the trellis, and of course, all these little tendrils have tied it up and aroundmost of the growth that's there. It takes a little bit of cutting, but be careful notto break the fruiting canes that you want to leave behind. Pull it off, and that will open the plantingup so we can see what we have left for good fruiting wood for this year. We've taken offthe four fruiting canes that we left last year, and you can see pretty much all that'sleft, at this point, is the green shoots from last year, that will provide us with goodfruit for this year.
Now we need to choose which four we want toput up. We're going to have four canes. One, two, three, four. Two for the lower wire,two for the upper wire, each heading off in different directions. What I want to look for in this case is canethat's got this nice chocolate brown color, and is about 38 of an inch in diameter. Aboutthe width of your little finger. If it's thinner than that, if it's very weak, it won't producegood fruit. Thin stuff like this, less than 38 of an inch in diameter, we'll just cutthat right out. Here we've got one that's going to go in thisdirection, that looks very nice. I'm going
to count, remember we want about 10 buds onit, so we'll count our buds. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. ThenI just cut out beyond that, because the weaker stuff at the very end isn't going to producevery good fruit. I have my four arms, but you can see I stillhave some leftover canes. What I'm going to use these for are what we call quot;renewal spurs.quot;I'm going to cut these back so that they just have one or two buds on them. What I'm goingto use these buds for, the green shoots that will emerge from these buds and grow out,will be the canes that I'll be putting on the wire next year for fruiting. We call thesequot;renewal spurs.quot;
How To Fertilize Fruit Trees Fertilizing Schedule Guide
hello friends I have several fruit trees inmy backyard and some of you had requested me a tutorial on what kind offertilizer schedule I have for my fruit trees In today's episode we will discuss how to add fertilizer for fruit trees so let's see what you need to startfor your fertilizer schedule firstly you will need some kind of compost ormanure in this case I'm using chicken manure and steer manure and then you willalso need the fertilizer that you're using and also a cultivator you will usethe cultivator to mix in the fertilizer
you need the fertilizer I'm using thisfertilizer for a long time now it's a great fertilizer organic red withbeneficial bacteria and I'll provide a product link to this individualdescription so that you can buy this product so the most important aspect of startinga fertilizer schedule is to make sure that you start at the right time now Iusually start my schedule in about February or March when the plant startsshowing some signs of growth as you can see here very closely this plant hasbegun to show some signs of growth and
this is the perfect time to start yourfertilizer schedule now in my zone which is Zone 9B, I startmy schedule in February so what do you do is just take the fertilizer andsprinkle it around the base of the plant and remember you can do this sameprocedure for fruit trees that are there in either containers or on the ground solet's start by looking at how you add fertilizer to containers and then whatyou do is once you add the fertilizer you top it off with the compost or manurein this case I'm using manure you can also use homemade compost themore compost you add to the soil the better it
is for your plants compost has a lot oflife in it and has a lot of beneficial bacteria that will really help yourplants grow and even our organic fertilizer has a lot of beneficialbacteria so that should also help now what you do is just make sure you mix itin the soil around the base of the plant and if you have a little shallow rootsdo not worry you can just remove them from the surface the roots that developdeeper into the soil are the ones that are better as you can see here we justremoved one and make sure there are no weeds around the base of the plant andmost importantly once you add the
fertilizer you need to water thoroughlyso for this container size we are looking at at least four gallons of water that youneed to water the plant with so that the plant starts getting the nutrientsand you also avoid any kind of fertilizer burn by watering your plantswell and let's see the same procedure againthis is for the Meyer Lemon Tree we're gonna be sprinkling the fertilizer aroundthe base of the plant and then mix in the compost or manure now what you canalso do is mix the fertilizer and manure together and then spread along the baseof the plant but just so that I show you how
much fertilizer to use I just separatedthese two steps and as you can see here we are using probably about two or threecups of fertilizer for plants of this size if you have bigger plants you mightwant to use more fertilizer but no matter what do you do if you are usingabout 3 cups or 4 cups of fertilizer that should be sufficient for most ofthe plants and we do the same thing now we rake in the soil we use this cultivatorthe handheld cultivator to mix in the fertilizer into the soil and eventuallythis fertilizer will get in deeper so do not worry about that once you startwatering the plant and we are going to follow
Hi, I'm Tricia, and organic gardener. Grapes are a beautiful edible landscapeplant, as well as producing delicious fruit. Today I'm going to plant a new grapevine. If you're not ready to plant your grapesas soon as they arrive, that's ok, you can heel them in. You can either dig a shallow trench, put the grape vines in and cover the roots with soil, or you can do like I've done and put the roots in a bucket, cover them with soil and protect themwith a little bit of straw.
Grapes are tolerant of a wide variety of soils, but it is important to check with your Master Gardener or local ag extension to find out what varieties will do best in your climate. Your site selection should be in fullsun with a southern exposure, away from trees. And avoid depressions where cool air can collect. Ideally, preparation for planting yourgrapes will start the year before with a soil test and an appropriate cover crop. Grapes like moderate fertilityand a pH of about 5.5 7. In most climates you can plant grapes in late winter or early spring.
For northern climates you might want towait until a little bit later in the spring. Just dig a hole the same size as theroots and don't add any fertilizer. You don't want to get more leaves than fruit! Soak the roots of your grapevine forabout 2 to 3 hours before planting, and then you can prune off any damaged roots. But it's important to leave as much of the root system as possible. Make sure that the roots are loose andnot clumped together. The hole should be deep enough to plantthe vine to the same level it was planted before,
with a few inches of soilover the longest roots. Gently back fill the soil with thetopsoil first. And if it hasn't rained recently make sure and give your plant some water. You want to train your newly plantedlittle grapevine to grow into a big grapevine with a straight single trunk reaching the trellis. In order to do that we're going to prune this plant so that it has one straightish cane. By the second year you need some kind of a support system. This two wire support system is very common and easy to build.
To train your grapevine to grow straight upto the trellising, you may need to do a temporary supportlike bamboo and then just tie it togetherwith a little twine or some tape. These are flame grapes, so I'll betraining them to a bilateral cordon. That is I want a nice straight trunk. And then I'll choose two buds that will be trained into big, permanent branches on either side of the trunk. It's really important to tag your plants.I use these permanent zinc plant tags
its really important to know what variety you have so that you can prune appropriately. Whether you have a big vineyard or you'vejust planted a few grape vines, grapes will benefit from cover cropping. So get ready for winter pruning,and Grow Organic for Life!.